House Republicans have stood firm on their opposition to President Barack Obama’s proposed tax hikes, which would come at a time when the economy is growing at an anemic pace. Back in August, the House passed a one-year extension of all current tax rates, hoping that Obama and Senate Democrats would come to their senses, reach a compromise with Republicans and avoid the economic troubles raising taxes would bring in these tough economic times.
Unfortunately, that hasn’t happened. What’s worse was a Washington Post report from September noting House Republicans were preparing to retreat on taxes should President Barack Obama win re-election.
While Republicans are still urging Obama to compromise since raising taxes would hamper an already tepid economic recovery — if not make it worse, House Speaker John Boehner said yesterday that he expects some sort of a deal to be reached during lame-duck session, which will be defined by the outcome of the election:
House Speaker John Boehner doesn’t expect a grand bargain avoiding the fiscal cliff to materialize in a lame duck session of Congress, but that doesn’t mean the country is headed over the edge. Instead, Boehner said Sunday, he thinks Congress and the White House will find a way to punt the looming deadlines on the debt ceiling, the Bush tax cuts and the budget sequester into 2013.
The 2012 presidential campaign isn’t even over yet, but that hasn’t stopped Vice President Joe Biden from putting together a campaign message for 2016. During a campaign stop yesterday in Florida, Biden talked Republican sibling of a supporter over the phone and made his pitch:
While he has previously hinted at a potential run, Biden smiled as he mentioned–perhaps jokingly–a White House run on the phone with a voter during a campaign stop at a Sarasota, Florida restaurant.
As he mingled with fans and supporters, one woman handed the vice president a cell phone at the event, urging Biden to speak with her brother, a Republican.
Biden took the phone, immediately saying: “I’ll tell ya what, you may be a Republican but I love ya.”
Wearing his trademark aviator sunglasses inside the restaurant, the former 36-year senator quickly got into a serious discussion with the relative about the health care law. A man standing nearby said, “I think he met his match,” referring to the detailed conversation.
After nearly two minutes on the call, Biden moved to end the conversation. “Look, I’m not trying to talk you into voting for me, I just wanted to say hi to you.”
“And after it’s all over, when your insurance rates go down,” he continued, “then you’ll vote for me in 2016. I’ll talk to you later.”
In his latest video, Steven Crowder, a conservative commentator, teaches kids about President Barack Obama’s tax plan by redistributing their candy to make sure everyone gets a “fair share”:
On Friday, the Commerce Department released economic growth statistics for the third quarter of this year. Anyone hoping that the United States was seeing movement towards a quicker economic recover was no doubt disappointed at the tepid 2% growth reported:
Growth in the July-September quarter climbed slightly but was still too weak to stir significantly more hiring. The pace of expansion rose to a 2 percent annual rate from 1.3 percent in the April-June quarter, led by more consumer and government spending.
Consumer spending rose at an annual rate of 2 percent in the July-September quarter, up from 1.5 percent in the previous quarter. And a survey by the University of Michigan released Friday found consumer confidence increased to its highest level in five years this month. That suggests spending may keep growing.
Americans spent more on cars, adding nearly 0.2 percentage point to growth. Housing added to growth for the sixth straight quarter.
Sure, it’s better than the dismal numbers from the second quarter, but the economy generally sees much more substantial growth in a period of recovery. Take, for example, the recovery under Ronald Reagan. The economy was coming out of a deep recession, but grew at an annual pace of 5.7% and created millions of private-sector jobs.
Written by Michael F. Cannon, Director of Health Policy Studies at the Cato Institute. Posted with permission from Cato @ Liberty.
Last Friday, House Oversight Committee chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) and colleagues sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Douglas Shulman accusing Treasury of “either willfully misleading the Committee or…purposefully withholding information that is essential to the Committee’s oversight effort.”
As Jonathan Adler and I document in our forthcoming Health Matrix article, “Taxation Without Representation: The Illegal IRS Rule to Expand Tax Credits Under the PPACA,” the IRS has announced it will impose ObamaCare’s taxes on employers and individuals whom Congress expressly exempted from those taxes, and will send potentially hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars to private health insurance companies, also contrary to the plain language of the statute. Oklahoma attorney general Scott Pruitt has filed a legal challenge to the IRS rule that imposes those illegal taxes.
With the presidential race tightening in a couple of key swing states this week and the unlikelihood that either campaign will pull away from contested electoral votes anytime soon, President Barack Obama’s campaign has finally decided to put forward an economic agenda for the next four years:
Faced with persistent calls for more detail about what a second term would look like, President Barack Obama on Tuesday released a glossy, 20-page repackaging of the plans he has announced on subjects from energy to education.
Obama planned to unveil the booklet, “The New Economic Patriotism: A PLAN FOR JOBS & MIDDLE-CLASS SECURITY,” at an event in Delray Tennis Center in Delray, Fla.
The campaign says 3.5 million copies are being printed, with 1.5 million of those being sent to field offices.
“We’re launching a full-scale, multiplatform organizational effort,” a campaign official said, “that will include direct mail, advertisements and distribution at field offices to ensure every voter knows what a second term of an Obama presidency would mean for middle-class Americans.
Obama’s campaign has unveiled an ad with the themes that can be found in this booklet, which is being released with just two weeks left before the election. That’s kind of a telling sign in and of itself that criticisms from Mitt Romney and Republicans that Obama hasn’t laid out an agenda is hurting him.
During a breakfast with reporters last month, Chris Chocola, president of the Club for Growth, told reporters that his influential organization, which frequently targets fiscally irresponsible Republicans in primaries, may make a run at Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) when he comes up for re-election in 2014.
Graham, who frequently pushes a neo-conservative foreign policy and is working to keep defense spending from ever being cut, came right back at the Club for Growth by reiterating his support for many of the bad, big government economic policies that fiscal conservatives so vocally oppose.
As if it weren’t evident enough why the Club for Growth may target him, Jim Antle explains exactly why Graham has earned the ire of grassroots groups and fiscal conservatives:
Sen. Lindsey Graham, the South Carolina Republican who holds the seat that belonged for nearly fifty years to Strom Thurmond, is on the warpath this campaign season—against his own party.
Graham took exception to ads being run against Democratic senators who voted to continue foreign aid to Libya, Egypt and Pakistan. American embassies were attacked in the first two countries; someone who helped U.S. authorities find Osama bin Laden has been detained in the third.
It appears that President Barack Obama is ready to send the United States over the “fiscal cliff.” The White House has said that that Obama would veto any tax deal that comes out of Congress that doesn’t raise taxes on higher-income earners:
The White House denies its position the fiscal cliff has changed in the wake of a Washington Post story Thursday that reported President Barack Obama was ready to play hardball with Republicans.
“The president has long made clear that he would veto an extension of tax cuts for the top 2 percent of Americans, the wealthiest Americans,” White House press secretary Jay Carney told reporters traveling with Obama on Thursday. “That has been his position, as you know, for a very long time.”
Carney said that the Republican-controlled House of Representatives could act to end some of that uncertainty right now.
“If there is concern about what we can do right now to address the so-called fiscal cliff, the House ought to follow the Senate and pass an extension of tax cuts for 98 percent of the American people, the middle class,” Carney said.
Last month, a pro-Democrat “super PAC” targeted State Rep. Lee Anderson, who is challenging U.S. Rep. John Barrow in Georgia 12th Congressional District, in an ad for signing the Taxpayer Protection Pledge from Americans for Tax Reform.
The ad, produced by Center Forward, claimed Anderson, a Republican, “signed a special interest pledge that keeps tax breaks for companies that ship out American jobs.” That, of course, is misleading, if not outright false. The pledge simply states that the candidate will “oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rates for individuals and/or businesses” and “oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates.”
Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) has decided not to sit on the sidelines in this race any longer. In a new ad slated to run in Southeast Georgia in a $496,000 buy, ATR is coming right after U.S. Rep. Barrow, hitting him on supporting President Barack Obama’s runaway spending spree, including his support of the 2009 stimulus bill.
Here’s the ad: